We placed our orders for what we originally came for but while waiting, we enjoyed a fast and easy economic bee hoon & mee from the popular store that sells economic nasi lemak for $2. I remember eating a lot of economic noodles when I followed my parents to the market and this was a trip down memory lane that led me to TAF club.
Along with our starches, we had a fried egg (we are a family that loves fried eggs after all); the chicken wing was deliciously crispy and fragrant; and I reconciled with on old love – the dodgy mystery meat fish fillet. Ooo, the chilli had a good kick to it too.
Tian Tian Lai (Come Daily) Hokkien Mee
Though the store looked deceptively peaceful, we had to wait for about 10 minutes for Tian Tian Lai’s (Come Daily) fried hokkien mee (#02-27) because someone had dapao-ed around 50 packets to feed a factory. I’m sure the wait is much longer on weekends so I can’t complain (I will just tell my MP to do something about it. Kidding.).
Gooey, prawn-y and crazy satisfying with just a smear of chilli, I would Tian Tian Lai if I were a skinny biatch. Tian Tian Lai's fried hokkien mee is one that sits on the ‘wet’ end and it has sparked a desire to get my fix of the charred, dry and slightly sticky version.
Chey Sua fried carrot cake
About 5 minutes later, the famous Chey Sua fried carrot cake (#02-30) sauntered over to our table. Talk about good timing. Though I usually prefer black carrot cake, the white carrot cake is supposedly more unique as the egg is crisp like a paella’s socarrat.
Just in case you were wondering why our plate looks so brown, it is because my younger sister had asked the aunty to fry it a little longer for a crispier carrot cake (yup, I'm convinced we were born from the same parents). By the way, the chili is a little watered down so you might have to ask for more on the side if you are into numbingly spicy stuff - or steal from the economic nasi lemak store. The radish cake itself is soft and yields defencelessly in every bite - a lovely contrast to the crusty, slightly burnt egg.
Ah Mao peanut pancake
By now, I was thankful I wore a loose-fitting top to brunch. While snooping around, I found Ah Mao peanut pancake which had one of those “Culinary Exellence” certificates hanging on its store front. Though I don’t believe in queues, I’m such a sucker for such stuff (no doubt thanks to our education system). I got to admit this is not a peanut pancake to flip over; it had gone soft around the once-crisp edges and the peanut filling is thin. But I gulped it down anyway.
Teochew Handmade Pau
Before we left, I got a box of char siew and kong bak paus for my parents from Teochew Handmade Pau (#02-02). I like their char siew pao as it is filled with lean meat instead of pork fat. From the corner of my eye, I spied a mini lotus paste pau that would fit ever so snugly into the tiniest space left in my tummy. This little baby oozed molten lotus paste and sealed a sweet end to our adventure in Toa Payoh.